Rick Bayless has been acclaimed widely as America's foremost proponent of Mexico's thrillingly diverse cuisine. In this companion book to his 26-part Public Television series, he takes us, with boyish enthusiasm, through Mexican markets, street stalls and home kitchens to bring us the great dishes of Mexico, one “plate” at a time.
Rick Bayless has been acclaimed widely as America's foremost proponent of Mexico's thrillingly diverse cuisine. In this companion book to his 26-part Public Television series, he takes us, with boyish enthusiasm, through Mexican markets, street stalls and home kitchens to bring us the great dishes of Mexico, one “plate” at a time. And each “plate” Rick presents here is a Mexican classic. Take guacamole, for instance. After teaching us the essentials for a perfect, classic guacamole, Rick shows how to spin contemporary interpretations, like his Roasted Poblano Guacamole with garlic and parsley. Rick's cuisine is always lively, but rooted in strong traditions.
Always the teacher, Rick begins each “plate” with some never-before-found features: traditional benchmarks (Rick's idea of the best guacamole), when to think of the recipes (weeknight dinners or casual party food), and advice for American cooks (Rick's insight into the ingredients that make the dish). He rounds out each “plate” with suggestions for working ahead.
To complete the journey into the Mexican mindset, Rick, with help from his testers, ends each “plate” with a question-and-answer section detailing just about everything a home cook might want to know: What are the best cuts of beef for grilled tacos? The best cheeses for quesadillas? Is one grill better than another? Rick draws from his years of living in Mexico, pulling us into the Mexican kitchen, to teach us how to create authentic Mexican dishes in our American kitchens.
Rick is an Indiana Jones of the stove, a Julia Child of Mexican cuisine in black jeans and a T-shirt. Rick's goal: to enable folks all across the United States to create dishes that weave in the rich tapestry of Mexican flavor with ingredients that are widely available. He always provides ingredients that make the dish authentic, but he also delivers with the right substitute if an ingredient is hard to find.
Experience food you can't wait to make in a new and user-friendly cookbook that contains the full range of dishes—Starters, Snacks and Light Meals; Soups, Stews and Sides; Entrées; Desserts and Drinks. Rick serves up such classic Mexican plates as Tomatillo-Braised Pork Loin, Quick-Fried Shrimp with Sweet Toasty Garlic, Chiles Rellenos, Cheesy Enchiladas Suizas, and Mexican Vanilla-Scented Flan.
And for an exciting taste of the unexpected, try Rick's contemporary interpretations of the classics—Crispy Potato Sopes with Goat Cheese and Fresh Herbs, Grilled Salmon with Lemon-and-Thyme-Scented Salsa Veracruzana, Broiled Flank Steak with Tomato-Poblano Salsa and Rustic Cajeta Apple Tarts with Berry “Salsa.” Food and friends, food and family. Good cooking, for Rick, is the unspoken animator of friends and family as they gather to share a meal. Rick's recipes lend themselves to weeknight family meals or celebrations. Take part in a tamalada, the tamal-making party before the party, or the ritual of a barbacoa, an earthy experience that Rick has made possible with a kettle grill in the backyard.
24 color photographs of finished dishes Photographs of Mexican location shots throughout
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Rick Bayless is Mexican cooking's great American voice. An award-winning chef and author of bestselling Mexican cookbooks like Authentic Mexican, he's found a way to present honest recipes in a friendly, relaxed fashion that nonetheless touches every technical base. One Plate at a Time takes his approach a step further. Bayless offers more than 120 recipes, providing traditional versions of much-loved classics like Green Chile Chicken Tamales, modern renditions of the basic repertoire, and dish "anatomies." These detail what a given dish should taste and look like, when it's best served, and how American cooks should approach its preparation. This goofproof strategy will appeal to old cooking hands and culinary gringos alike.
Ranging from soups and starters to entrees, light meals, desserts, and drinks, the chapters present a wide range of dishes, from the simple (such as guacamole, updated with roasted poblanos, garlic, and tomatoes) to the more complex (a classic red mole with turkey, for one, followed by Roasted Cornish Game Hens with Apricot-Pine Nut Mole). Other winning recipes include Seafood in Mojo de Ajo (with toasted, slow-cooked garlic), Smoky Chipotle Beans with Wilted Spinach and Masa "Gnocchi," and, for dessert, a definitive vanilla flan with instructions for preparing it in three versions: light, creamy, and rich. Throughout, recipes are followed by paragraph-long "postmortems" (is Mexican vanilla worth searching out, for instance) that further extend reader understanding. With 32 pages of color photos and an extensive glossary, the book is an inspired place to start or continue a Mexican cooking journey. --Arthur BoehmAbout the Author:
Rick Bayless has won our country's highest chef honors (James Beard Foundation's National Chef of the Year). He's also won our highest cookbook award for Rick Bayless's Mexican Kitchen (Julia Child/IACP Cookbook of the Year). His other cookbooks include Authentic Mexican and Salsas That Cook. His famed Chicago restaurants, Frontera Grill and Topolobampo, have both won many awards, including the coveted Ivy Award. He lives in Chicago with his wife, Deann, and their daughter, Lane.
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